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Tuesday, March 7, 2006

How Many Democrats Does it Take to Create a Slogan?

Posted by on March 7 at 10:03 AM

In the latest story about how Democrats are “struggling” to agree on an a message going into the mid-term elections, today’s Washington Post finds party leaders squabbling over the word “together.”

Even the party’s five-word 2006 motto has preoccupied congressional Democrats for months. “We had meetings where senators offered suggestions,” Reid said. “We had focus groups. We worked hard on that… . It’s a long, slow, arduous process.”

That slogan — “Together, America Can Do Better” — was revived from the 2004 presidential campaign of Sen. John F. Kerry. It was the last line of Virginia Gov. Timothy M. Kaine’s response to President Bush’s State of the Union address, and Reid, Pelosi and Democratic National Committee Chairman Howard Dean have used it in speeches. But there is an effort afoot to drop the word “together.” It tests well in focus groups and audiences, Democratic sources said, but it makes the syntax incorrect.

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Here's our fucking problem - too much time spent on a bullshit slogan that does not mean a damn thing not enough time trying to think about an authentic Democratic vision that we all believe in and actually makes sense for the party.

Makes the syntax incorrect? According to what stick-in-the-mud prescriptive grammarian?

Tepid and uninspiring in the extreme.

Thinks the syntax is correct, Yoda does.

Democrats slogan suggestions:

"We can't possibly make things any WORSE?"

"Elect us and everyone gets a free chalupa!"

"The Democrats, the Santorum-free alternative."

Democratic slogan: HELLBENT ON COMPROMISE!

Please shoot me in the face

If they knew what the hell they were doing, the slogan would be: "End the war."

Much like the 1850s Whig Party - avoiding the issue in hopes that it will go away, and nominating war heroes to distract from the fact that they have no idea what they would do if they actually won.

Great idea! Reuse the slogan that lost us the last election. For that matter, didn't running a nationwide campaign lose us most of the 2002 elections?

Uhh... not sure what planet you're on, but here on planet Earth, the Democratic party did not oppose the war in the last election.

In case you have forgotten, they specifically rejected more than one nominee that opposed the Iraq War, in favor of a candidate whose position was far too complicated to fit into a slogan - which in the context of a campaign, meant he had no position.

And they had nothing resembling a national campaign in 2002. The House minority leader at the time specifically supported the Iraq War, and defended his support by saying that if more Democrats running for Congress had opposed the war, they might have lost even more seats than they did.

Since you are not even familiar with what happened 2-4 years ago, I may as well explain my reference to the Whig party. In 1848 and 1852, the Whig party nominated heroes from the Mexican War, Zachary Taylor and Winfield Scott, and avoided taking any position on slavery, which was the big issue of the time.

It worked in 1848, but since they had no real platform, their president actually opposed the policies that Whigs in Congress wanted to advance. In 1852 they had no platform at all, and lost in an electoral college landslide.

Anti-immigrant Whigs left to join the Know-Nothing party. Anti-slavery Whigs left to join the Republican party, which not too long after, ended up dominating politics for decades.

The problem with the Democratic party, at least as far as national elections, is that they stands for nothing. Do they support a fairer tax system? Legal abortion? Withdrawal from Iraq? Same-sex marriage? Fair trials? Do they even oppose torture? Judging from their voting record, and the candidates that the DCCC and DSCC have recruited this year, not really.

If they actually won back control of Congress, it wouldn't change much, because having run on nothing in particular, they would have no mandate to do anything in particular.

DEM SLOGAN: "Vote and be counted."

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